$627 Million Proposed for New Restoration Projects across US Gulf Coast


6 December 2013 – Washington, DC, USA – The US Department of the Interior has announced a draft plan by the US Natural Resources Trustees for additional restoration projects along the Gulf Coast.  The draft plan proposes more than $625 million in new early restoration projects across the US Gulf states — making this the largest phase of Early Restoration yet. The draft plan also outlines the Trustees’ proposed programmatic approach to early restoration planning for Phase III and future early restoration plans. The draft plan is available for public review and comment through February 4, 2014.

131206-pmwj18-$627-million-IMAGEIncluded in the draft are 44 proposed projects to restore barrier islands, dunes, marshes, shorelines, sea grasses, and oyster beds. They also begin to address lost recreational use of natural resources through boat ramps, park enhancements, and other projects. View the draft plan and fact sheets for each project at http://www.gulfspillrestoration.noaa.gov/restoration/early-restoration/phase-iii/.

Of the $627 million, ecological projects comprise about $397 million, which is approximately 63 percent of the total. Lost recreational use projects make up the remaining $230 million. Both approaches meet criteria under the Oil Pollution Act and other applicable laws and guidelines.

Early restoration projects represent an initial step toward fulfilling the responsible parties’ obligation to pay for restoration of injured natural resources caused by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. During Early Restoration, the Trustees and BP must negotiate and agree to each restoration project. Meanwhile, the full damage assessment continues. Ultimately, the responsible parties are obligated to compensate the public for the full scope of natural resource injuries caused by the spill, including the cost of assessment and restoration planning.

For more about gulf coast early restoration projects, go to website: http://www.gulfspillrestoration.noaa.gov/restoration/early-restoration/

For more about the Natural Resources Trustees, go to http://www.gulfspillrestoration.noaa.gov/about-us/co-trustees/

Established by an Act of the United States Congress in 1849, the United States Department of the Interior (DOI) is the federal executive department of the U.S. government responsible for the management and conservation of most federal land and natural resources, and the administration of programs relating to Native Americans, territorial affairs, and insular areas of the United States. Operating units include the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Office of Surface Mining, Bureau of Reclamation, National Park Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Geological Survey and several other project-oriented organizations. The Department is administered by the US Secretary of the Interior, who is a member of the Cabinet of the President. The current Secretary is Sally Jewell. For more information, visit http://www.doi.gov.

Source: US Department of the Interior